RAMALLAH (Dispatches) –
Activists called on the international community Saturday to take measures against the Zionist regime after its unprecedented designation of six Palestinian human rights groups as ‘terrorist’ organizations.
They said the decision amounts to an attempt to silence groups that have documented the occupying regime’s harsh treatment of Palestinians over the years. Some of the groups have close ties with rights organizations in the occupied territories and abroad.
On Friday, Zionist war ministry said in a statement that it had designated six civil society groups of Addameer, al-Haq, Defense for Children Palestine, the Union of Agricultural Work Committees, Bisan Center for Research and Development, and the Union of Palestinian Women Committees as “terrorist organizations.”
According to Palestine’s official Wafa news agency, the decision will authorize the regime to effectively outlaw the activities of these civil society groups, close their offices, seize their assets, and arrest and jail their staff members.
Furthermore, the occupying regime will also prohibit funding or even publicly expressing support for the group’s activities.
The Zionist regime says the groups have ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PLFP), a Palestinian resistance movement, alleging that they are funneling donor aid to anti-Zionist resistance groups.
The Palestinian Hamas resistance movement has condemned the occupying regime, describing the move as a “war” against the “Palestinian existence.”
Later on Friday, Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem strongly denounced the highly provocative decision, warning that it is a kind of war against Palestine.
“The decision of the Zionist Minister of War to classify national human rights, social and development institutions as terrorist organizations, is a form of war against the Palestinian existence, and a terrorist behavior that disregards all international laws and norms,” the Hamas official said.
The regime’s move drew criticism from the United Nations and human rights watchdogs.
At least three American legislators also lambasted the decision, Wafa said.
Congresswoman Betty McCollum, Ilhan Omar, who represents Minnesota’s 5th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives, and Mark Pocan, who represents Wisconsin’s 2nd Congressional District in the US House of Representatives, denounced the Zionist decision as an attempt to silence advocates of Palestinian rights.